Linked by Thom Holwerda on Wed 22nd Sep 2010 17:58 UTC
Apple As I was casually browsing around today, I came across this blog post. It's about the recently released VLC media player for the iPad, which you can use to play just about any video under the sun on your iPad. The blog post is a complaint about a bit of help text that's not properly rendered inside the application - annoying, but no dealbreaker. Until I actually read the text - this is how you're supposed to get content on your iPad?
Order by: Score:
yup
by poundsmack on Wed 22nd Sep 2010 18:09 UTC
poundsmack
Member since:
2005-07-13

I never liked how iTunes and other apple products work with it for media. I am a fan of the drag and drop and your done philosiphy. this is just apples way of ensuring it remains the central hub for your digital and media driven life. once they let go of that control its hard to reestablish that, BUT if they never let it go they reign supreme (steve jobs style thinking).

it allows apple to be at every stage of use in its product line. good for business, bad for consumers...
(hell for people like us!)

Reply Score: 12

RE: yup
by kaiwai on Thu 23rd Sep 2010 02:44 UTC in reply to "yup"
kaiwai Member since:
2005-07-06

I never liked how iTunes and other apple products work with it for media. I am a fan of the drag and drop and your done philosiphy. this is just apples way of ensuring it remains the central hub for your digital and media driven life. once they let go of that control its hard to reestablish that, BUT if they never let it go they reign supreme (steve jobs style thinking).

it allows apple to be at every stage of use in its product line. good for business, bad for consumers...
(hell for people like us!)


Drag and drop only works well if you have a small library of music and movies but as soon as you get into the gigabytes in size it becomes very cumbersome. For example I had a Cowon D2 player and used the drag and drop methodology - the problem was I had over 20GB of music and it would take ages each time it would reboot as it would re-index all the songs over and over again - same can be said for the Sandisk Sansa which had a similar flaw (made worse that the more music you had the more sluggish the interface was).

I would have preferred Apple to adopt something like MTP but I hardly see it as much of a barrier if one is going to be 'All Apple' which is pretty much where I sit - and there are viable alternatives to the iPod the question is whether you're willing to give up the coolness status associated with Apple.

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: yup - drag and drop
by jabbotts on Thu 23rd Sep 2010 11:44 UTC in reply to "RE: yup"
jabbotts Member since:
2007-09-06

The could easily provide a device that gives you drag and drop with the option to use a media manager application. The current problem is providing devices that only allow a media manager in absence of the drag/drop option.

With Amorak, I can mount the device and have the media manager dump content to the device directly. I can dump to a Portable directory and rsync/ssh it to the device (my current method since it allows update through any network connection). I can simply open the content library and drag or ssh files without touching the media manager. That's world better than being required to connect a wire and run Itunes or outright void the device warranty.

Consumers could have it both ways and choose what works best for there needs if the device manufacturers would stop playing BS walled garden games.

Reply Score: 5

RE[3]: yup - drag and drop
by kaiwai on Fri 24th Sep 2010 01:01 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: yup - drag and drop"
kaiwai Member since:
2005-07-06

The could easily provide a device that gives you drag and drop with the option to use a media manager application. The current problem is providing devices that only allow a media manager in absence of the drag/drop option.

With Amorak, I can mount the device and have the media manager dump content to the device directly. I can dump to a Portable directory and rsync/ssh it to the device (my current method since it allows update through any network connection). I can simply open the content library and drag or ssh files without touching the media manager. That's world better than being required to connect a wire and run Itunes or outright void the device warranty.

Consumers could have it both ways and choose what works best for there needs if the device manufacturers would stop playing BS walled garden games.


There was a standard, PTP for cameras and MTP for media devices - and as long as hardware vendors conformed to those specifications then everything was sweet. The problem was, however, many would have half baked implementations that caused problems for those who relied on libmtp for compatibility. The problem is compounded even further by Microsoft who themselves stopped using it in favour of creating a proprietary one for Zune (along with turning their back on PlaysForSure which enabled cross player compatibility).

I had a Creative hard disk MP3 player for many years and it worked perfectly with MTP; it worked beautifully with Windows Media Player, synchronisation was incredibly fast and reliable. I can't work out for the love of me why there is this movement back to proprietary protocols when for so many years the industry was trying to move to a single protocol with a single player on Windows.

Edited 2010-09-24 01:02 UTC

Reply Score: 3

RE[4]: yup - drag and drop
by Shkaba on Fri 24th Sep 2010 01:11 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: yup - drag and drop"
Shkaba Member since:
2006-06-22

GTFO, you don't know the answer to that??? iPod got big and Apple became a major player overnight, causing everyone to imitate their propriatory ways!

Reply Score: 2

RE: yup - removable media here also
by jabbotts on Thu 23rd Sep 2010 11:39 UTC in reply to "yup"
jabbotts Member since:
2007-09-06

From the moment I had my first MP3 player that simply displayed as a flashdrive, required sync software has been a near deal breaker. One can provide a product which presents as a flashdrive and provides a media manager for syncing content. They could provide the device for both basic and advanced users.

This is actually one of my complaints about the Ithingy overall; WTF do I need Itunes to activate my phone for? Devices that are that user limiting can get stuffed. I'll stick with what I got that blows 32 GeeBees out of the water and gives me the easy choice of SSH or plugging it in like a flashdrive.

Reply Score: 3

Comment by Kroc
by Kroc on Wed 22nd Sep 2010 18:21 UTC
Kroc
Member since:
2005-11-10

Reminds me of the scene in The Simpsons where Homer creates the Flaming Homer and Mo steals it, Homer is trying to tell Mo how disappointed he is, but Mo can’t hear him over all the money he’s making.

Reply Score: 4

gnemmi
Member since:
2006-08-17

... you just can´t complain when he screws you up ...

Everyone keeps complaining and whining and all of that: in vain.

Apple has made, and keeps making, every possible effort to let you know that they are a "one way ticket" ... yet every Apple "younameit" owner keeps complaining and posting and raving about Apple´s attitude towards it´s customers.

Basically: don´t buy them, and if you persist, well, you _knew_ about them. You just can´t say you didn´t see it coming.

Edited 2010-09-22 18:44 UTC

Reply Score: 9

jabbotts Member since:
2007-09-06

I agree, for the consumers making the choice.. don't like it.. don't buy it. But, what of us geeks who have to support the crap after someone else buys it due to short term thinking and pretty blinky lights? Not all of us chose the product that we have to take care of afterward.

Reply Score: 3

gnemmi Member since:
2006-08-17

If you can see the Apple logo in the box then don´t even open the thing and take it back to the store for a refund; and don´t forget to tell "blinky eyes" why you are going to, or did do that ... then you can rest assured that not only you but also "blinky eyes" will never buy from them again.

Edited 2010-09-23 17:03 UTC

Reply Score: 1

jabbotts Member since:
2007-09-06

Let me know how that goes with your significant other.

Reply Score: 4

gnemmi Member since:
2006-08-17

I get the picture now ...

Well then .. let´s just say you let the "woman with the screwdriver in" ... but hey! Who´s going to complain when she screws you up ?

Boiling it down: you are toasted ... just put on your happy face mask (is even good for training .. you´re gonna need it a lot along the way with your significant other .. believe me ...) and pretend she just gave you a really good looking, way fancier than needed e-reader and picture frame ;)

Reply Score: 1

jabbotts Member since:
2007-09-06

On the up side, it is good hardware so anything that gets outgrown becomes potential fodder for reflash/reinstall. It also gives me direct access to osX for mucking with.

But bloody hell would I like to see some design decisions reconsidered.

Reply Score: 2

Intention is to hide the file system
by markus on Wed 22nd Sep 2010 18:44 UTC
markus
Member since:
2006-01-14

While I understand the concerns you mentioned, as an iPhone developer I can state, that the reason behind this is, that Apple tries to hide the file system from the user.
One can argue, that access via iTunes is to complicated, hierarchical file systems are also too complicated for some users.
Access via iTunes works by selecting the App and manipulating it's documents directory (if the App has set a flag to show it in iTunes). Access to sub directories is restricted (I believe to be read only). So Apple achieved that the App is the entry point for file activities and that there is mainly one directory the user deals with. Of course there would have been other ways to do this, but Apple did choose this one. Not so bad I believe.

Reply Score: 2

Thom_Holwerda Member since:
2005-06-29

What about simply mounting the iPhone in the Finder/Explorer? Drag and drop any shit to that icon, and it'll be put in the right place on the iPhone. Dragging 10 videos and 30 mp3s? The videos will show up in everything that can play video on the iPad, and the music will show up everywhere you can play music.

Managing iTunes itself is miles more complicated than that!

This isn't about making the device less complex. This is about getting you to use the iTMS.

Edited 2010-09-22 18:55 UTC

Reply Score: 11

Macrat Member since:
2006-03-27

What about simply mounting the iPhone in the Finder/Explorer


You're assuming that most computer users today even know what a Finder/Explorer window is.

Reply Score: 1

ebasconp Member since:
2006-05-09

You are really in troubles if you do not know what "Finder/Explorer" is.

I think that must exist a minimal/basic computer knowledge that every user must know: If nobody asks to someone else to drive a car when the latter does not know how to do it, why do we consider that the software must be quite easy to use for people with no training at all?

Edited 2010-09-22 21:19 UTC

Reply Score: 5

Moredhas Member since:
2008-04-10

I find it so hard not to get angry with people. Regularly I try to give people directions.
"Okay,just open up Explorer" I say
"What's that?", replies my uneducated subject
"It's your file manager" I return with. So he doesn't know the name of his file manager, big deal. Or so I delude myself.
"I don't think I have a... 'file manager'" at this point I twitch but keep my cool. I calmly explain that the file manager is where they can see their files, copy them, and otherwise use them. I see a smile and a nod as the idea seems to dawn on him. I expect him to click on that shiney "Computer" button. He opens iTunes... At this point, on the inside I am in a muderous rage at the idiocy of the so called (and sadly, likely true) "average" computer user. I take over control of the computer, the user's objections holding about as much meaning and coherency to me as the grunting of a large ape. The job is done, and I take a week off from "people" so I don't kill the next one to ask me a stupid question.

Reply Score: 11

Thom_Holwerda Member since:
2005-06-29

Let me rephrase your support call for you. We have a user with a bunch of music and video files he wants to transfer to his iPhone. He downloaded the files, or got them from a friend, I don't know.

"Plug in your iPhone. You see? An iPhone icon appeared on your desktop. Now drag the music and video files onto that icon. You're all set. Have a great day!"

That's how it should be. I can assure you it's easier to explain drag and drop than it is to explain how to use the monstrosity that is iTunes - and using iTunes will inevitable lead to MORE support calls down the line, since iTunes WILL break. It's inevitable.

On top of that, help desks are a stupid concept to begin with. You can't help people operate a highly visual medium with just your own voice. It's idiotic. Sit down next to the same person, and it'll be easy as pie. Basic human psychology.

And don't get me started on remote assistance. It's a curse, as it doesn't teach anyone anything.

Edited 2010-09-22 22:15 UTC

Reply Score: 3

Moredhas Member since:
2008-04-10

Oh I wasn't specifically talking about iDevices here, just any job that begins with Explorer. I usually try, even in person, just to tell people what to do, otherwise I take over, get stuff done in the vlink of an eye, and they don't learn a thing. Give a man a fish, he won't go hungry tonight, teach a man to fish and he'll never go hungry again. I really wish that held true with computers. By its very nature, tech support should be a doomed profession. People should pay attention to common issues and learn how to fix them, but I can't count the number of times I've "fixed" someone's iPhone by restarting it. And I often see the same people come back to the shop, not knowing how to restart it. Not. That. Hard. Hold the home button and the lock button... Nokias have a similar reset shortcut, but I forgive customers for coming back for that one. You need to be an octopus to do it, and it varies model to model. On Nokia slides it's usually holding all of # 1 3 answer and hangup. If power is a seperate key, you might need a third hand...

Reply Score: 2

lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

We have a user with a bunch of music and video files he wants to transfer to his iPhone. He downloaded the files, or got them from a friend, I don't know. "Plug in your iPhone. You see? An iPhone icon appeared on your desktop. Now drag the music and video files onto that icon. You're all set. Have a great day!" That's how it should be. I can assure you it's easier to explain drag and drop than it is to explain how to use the monstrosity that is iTunes.


I have a potential solution for you Thom:

http://www.libimobiledevice.org/
http://dolphin.kde.org/

Dolphin drag and drop between panes works just fine, and libimobiledevice should make connecting an iPhone/iPad/iPod device auto-open Dolphin and show up in the window.

AFAIK, both pieces of this puzzle (Dolphin and libimobiledevice) will be available in the default install in the next release of Kubuntu. Enjoy.

With Dolphin, if one inserts an audio CD with an iDevice connected at the same time, one can even drag from a virtual pseudo-directory showing under the audiocd:/ and drop .mp3 or .ogg files straight to the iDevice all in one operation ... no need to rip and then sync at all.

Actually, to tell you the truth, according to the screenshots on the libimobiledevice homepage, you don't actually even need Dolphin (or KDE), you could just as easily actually use Nautilis and plain old Ubuntu/GNOME. However AFAIK Nautilis doesn't provide a CD ripper represented as a virtual pseudo-directory.

Reply Score: 3

StephenBeDoper Member since:
2005-07-06

On top of that, help desks are a stupid concept to begin with. You can't help people operate a highly visual medium with just your own voice. It's idiotic. Sit down next to the same person, and it'll be easy as pie. Basic human psychology.

And don't get me started on remote assistance. It's a curse, as it doesn't teach anyone anything.


I don't agree with that last point. Remote support can be of immense benefit, both to those providing & those receiving support. Immediacy is the big one - I've lost count of the number of times that I've been able to fix a problem in 5 minutes, when it would have taken 30-60 minutes if I'd done the same thing on-site (if you include travel time, etc).

Onsite support isn't always possible, and remote support software is usually the best way to get around the limitations of telephone support that you mentioned. By and large, if someone can't provide effective support via something like VNC, they're probably not going to be much (if any) more effective onsite.

As for it not "teach[ing] anyone anything", education isn't the purpose of technical support (remote or onsite). If someone comes to you for training, then they probably have both a desire and a willingness to learn - that's usually not the case with technical support (at least IME). That said, the same tools used for remote support can be just as effective for doing training remotely.

Reply Score: 2

Laurence Member since:
2007-03-26

Few n00bs know what a "file explorer" is, but anyone who's ever used XP for more than 10 seconds knows how to "double click 'my computer'".

Having worked with some people so computer illiterate that they weren't even aware CD-ROMs were read only nor that Microsoft Word was a different product to Microsoft Windows - I've had to learn to explain things in a way that they understand. And usually that amounts to:
me: close everything down
client: done that
me: now double click the 'My Computer'

Works every time (thankfully).

Reply Score: 2

Moredhas Member since:
2008-04-10

Unless they're using Vista or 7. Microsoft no longer like you thinking of your computer as yours, it seems ;)

Reply Score: 2

Laurence Member since:
2007-03-26

Unless they're using Vista or 7. Microsoft no longer like you thinking of your computer as yours, it seems ;)

Yeah, I did specify XP for that reason.

IIRC "My Computer" (or something to that effect) now appears in the start menu. But I don't have Vista/7 installed to check

Reply Score: 2

Icaria Member since:
2010-06-19

Oh god, that's just too accurate. I'm not sure whether to laugh, or cry.

That said, DnD is a nightmare in itself: you never know whether dragging and dropping something in explorer is going to cut, copy, or create a link to the file, plus it's all too common for someone's finger to slip mid-dragging and for the file to get lost into the nethers of computer oblivion.

The number of times that I've shown someone how to open up two windows side-by-side (that is, after I've stripped most of the crap out of Explorer's UI) and ctrl+c/v or copy/paste from the context menus and, once I handed control back over to the user, the *first* thing the user did was maximise one of the explorer windows... ugh, it's just exasperating.

Worse yet is people who don't know where their files are: they just save their document to wherever the Windows save dialogue takes them, then they only know how to access the file from Word's recent files list.

Reply Score: 1

axilmar Member since:
2006-03-20

Files and directories is not the appropriate metaphor for illiterate computer users. There needs to be another metaphor.

Reply Score: 2

werpu Member since:
2006-01-18

Files and directories is not the appropriate metaphor for illiterate computer users. There needs to be another metaphor.

Well apples approach was to hide them and make things in this area 10 times more complicated. Guess what 90% of computer users are perfectly fine with folders and files the 10% impaired cannot be helped not even by removing folders and files but trying that causes problems for the 90% who actually can think and adapt.

Reply Score: 2

Icaria Member since:
2010-06-19

Bullshit. If you can't comprehend a file and *folder* metaphor for cataloguing your data, you're officially too retarded to use a computer and shouldn't be allowed.

The problem isn't the metaphor, the problem is:

a) Implementation. The FHS and layout of the Windows filesystem are both horrible. FHS is redeemed only by everything the user creates being in the /home/username/ directory. Windows can't even get that right, with files ending up all over the place, merged folders and shortcut abuse (nothing is quite as retarded as recursively navigating the filesystem in Windows) - although Windows at least has a sane way of managing multiple filesystems, without nesting them inside of one another.

b) Abstraction. MS gave up on the filesystem back in the mid 90's. It was about then that they started introducing recent files lists and shortcuts in the file dialogues, making the filesystem *less* apparent to the user. These days, it's gotten to the point where 'desktop search' in a standard feature on most desktops, which is absurd; it should never have gotten to the point where you need to search for files on your own bloody computer.

c) Users simply aren't schooled correctly on how to use a filesystem. Beginners' tutorials in computing generally consist of performing a task, like writing a document, or using a web browser. The filesystem and file management are either assumed, or neglected. It's up there with tooltips and the menubar, on the list of shit that people should learn about but are never taught.

Reply Score: 5

segedunum Member since:
2005-07-06

You're not going to get very far with a computer not knowing what a file is.

To have to have an iTunes subscription and only be able to get content through vetted channels is piss poor and you know it.

Edited 2010-09-23 00:41 UTC

Reply Score: 3

r_a_trip Member since:
2005-07-06

You're not going to get very far with a computer not knowing what a file is.

Unfortunately there are whole tribes of computing impaired specimens that get by on just clicking the "floppy" icon, and then depending on the MRUL (without even knowing what that is) to reopen their stuff.

They don't save a file, they "make Windows remember" what they just did. They even "know that Windows can remember 10 things".

**Shudder**

Reply Score: 3

No it isnt Member since:
2005-11-14

I can't really see how Apple is helping this tiny minority of completely computer-illiterate morons by making it impossible for regular users to copy files to their tablet computers.

Reply Score: 3

apoclypse Member since:
2007-02-17

This "tiny minority" i sway larger than those who you claim are literate, by orders of magnitude. If that weren't he case then Apple wouldn't be selling these devices as any sane computer "literate" person would most likely not even own one due to the limitations. That is not the case. There are people I know who don't even know how to sync the device at all but still own one.

Look, let's all agree that iTunes sucks, and that Apple should have some form of mounted or filesystem that doesn't require iTunes, even if you can't get to your itunes media (music, videos, etc)from there. But let's also agree that this "article" is stupid.

Reply Score: 2

No it isnt Member since:
2005-11-14

Sorry, but that's just untrue. iPads and iPhones are mainly bought by Apple enthusiasts (stats prove this), who all have some basic understanding of how to use a computer, and especially drag & drop, which is actually not only intuitive and easy on Mac OS, but one of the most basic features of the UI.

And since that point is a lie, I take for granted that you don't actually know anyone who owns an iDevice without knowing how to sync it.

Reply Score: 2

kjmph Member since:
2009-07-17

I agree with you Thom, I just bought an Android device, and I mount the USB drive and drag content on it. When I unmount it, it just figures out what that content is, and apps have access to it. It even has the nice touch that folders become gallery names and such. It's really straight forward. It would be even nicer if I could just drag files to the icon and let the device handle the file layout, but it's a close second.

Edited 2010-09-22 21:28 UTC

Reply Score: 2

marsofearth Member since:
2009-12-13

Managing iTunes itself is miles more complicated than that!

.. Yeah, I agree to a certain extent, but I think the answer is much less Black and White, iTunes vs File System.

Apple does move in baby steps, love it or hate it. Most people that have an apple device understand iTunes and that is where they start from, historically speaking...

I would be more interested in hearing how the interface for iTunes/iOS devices could be streamlined for greater ease of access.

Reply Score: 1

Bully Member since:
2006-04-07

While I understand the concerns you mentioned, as an iPhone developer I can state, that the reason behind this is, that Apple tries to hide the file system from the user.
One can argue, that access via iTunes is to complicated, hierarchical file systems are also too complicated for some users.


iTunes is way more complicated.
If the intend was to make it more simple, then they failed miserably.

Reply Score: 5

lucas_maximus Member since:
2009-08-18

I don't understand how iTunes works (I am a web developer) it confuses the hell outta me and I use winamp with all the library features removed, I store all my music albums in a folders that are named <artist> - <album>.

But everyone I know that is non-technical and the same generation as me seems to "get it". I think it sometimes is more with how we think i.e. we understand the computer and how it stores things that means that we get confused.

Edited 2010-09-22 19:02 UTC

Reply Score: 3

Thom_Holwerda Member since:
2005-06-29

I can't count how many people I've helped with iTunes problems. That is one serious piece of broken software.

Reply Score: 5

Thom_Holwerda Member since:
2005-06-29

How many of those problems were caused by you?


None.

Or from them trying to follow your advice?


None.

Reply Score: 2

r_a_trip Member since:
2005-07-06

How many of those problems were caused by you?

Or from them trying to follow your advice?


< butt in >

Wrong order. Ordinairy mortal souls only ask for help when they are absolutely stuck. When their own illogical "magic" fails, they try to convince a geek they should be helped.

I will concede though that, when the excrement hits the fan, a geek probably is going to cause more additional trouble with unintuitive "automagic" programs when called for help than another computer illiterate.

< /butt in >

Reply Score: 2

Lennie Member since:
2007-09-22

I'm a bit surprised you didn't know this already. You seem to be so well informed usually. ;-)

Reply Score: 2

Thom_Holwerda Member since:
2005-06-29

I used Amarok once, saw vertical tabs, and I died a little.

Also, this is relevant how?

Reply Score: 1

segedunum Member since:
2005-07-06

Because when someone points out that something that Apple has done is a very long way from being perfect he then picks out something he thinks is worse, or just as bad, and that gives him warm fuzzies.

In reality, Amarok is miles better than iTunes because it can actually organise your music the way that you want and in a way that's relevant - not Apple. The functionality it has is also miles ahead of iTunes so I don't know where that came out of the blue from either, but it probably means he knows it's true. Oh, and the vertical tabs are gone.

Edited 2010-09-23 00:48 UTC

Reply Score: 8

jabbotts Member since:
2007-09-06

I recently moved from Deb 5 to Deb 6.

Old Amarok, I simply setup a generic mobile device entry pointing at a directory separate from my main library; files got renamed applicably and dropped in place for an easy rsync to my physical mobile device.

New Amarok, they seem to have "tried to help" with the new interface. I can't organize files from the "now playing" listing or alternatively, get a nice full window view of my library. I can't seem to setup a generic device pointed back at my Portable directory so I'm left with only the option to manage media through the filesystem.

If I'm missing some hidden list of options in Amarok, I'd be grateful to be told so. Otherwise, they seem to have copied Itunes ability to hinder the user.

Reply Score: 2

lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

I used Amarok once, saw vertical tabs, and I died a little. Also, this is relevant how?


Amarok doesn't have vertical tabs since ages.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Amarok_%28software%29
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Amarok_2_3_0.png

I have no information on how well Amarok works recently in conjunction with libimobiledevice, but since Amarok works just fine with ordinary USB devices with VFAT (generic MP3 players) support, I don't see why any iDevice should present a problem any longer.

Reply Score: 3

MacMan Member since:
2006-11-19

Amarok, that is one hideously ugly piece of software.

Reply Score: 0

Bill Shooter of Bul Member since:
2006-07-14

I used to agree with you. I thought amarok was terrible( as were all the other linuxy media players) but I recently gave it another try. Verdict: its pretty awesome. iTunes always seemed to be the windows media player of the Mac. You can count on it being installed and better than real player, but still so absurdly wrong.

Reply Score: 3

lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

I used to agree with you. I thought amarok was terrible( as were all the other linuxy media players) but I recently gave it another try. Verdict: its pretty awesome. iTunes always seemed to be the windows media player of the Mac. You can count on it being installed and better than real player, but still so absurdly wrong.


Amarok is indeed an awesome media player/manager, but a number of people profess to be disenchanted with the change in Amarok from version 1.4.x to version 2.x which occurred with KDE 4.

Personally, I think that maybe these people just wanted to jump on a perceived bandwagon involving bitching about KDE 4, but that perception might just be mine.

In any event, for those who liked Amarok as it was circa version 1.4.x, there is now the option of running Clementine player instead.

http://www.ubuntugeek.com/clementine-player-a-cross-platform-music-...
http://www.clementine-player.org/

One can even run Clementine on Windows.

Clementine's claimed support for iDevices is pretty reasonable:
http://code.google.com/p/clementine-player/wiki/PortableDevices

http://images.clementine-player.org/screenshots/clementine-0.5-2.pn...

iPod classic, iPod Touch, iPhone and iPad are all supported on Mac and Linux (on Linux Clementine requires libgpod and libimobiledevice to be installed), and on Windows (the latter three iDevices require iTunes to be installed).

Only where there is iTunes (i.e. on Mac and Windows) would the iDevices DRM be supported/invoked (depending somewhat on your point of view, I suppose).

Edited 2010-09-23 06:18 UTC

Reply Score: 4

werpu Member since:
2006-01-18

Believe me as an iPad owner I can clearly state this idea does not work out. First you only are allowed to do this on a machine which has registered your pad in iTunes. Which is up to five machines max. Secondly the first an innocent user stumbles onto is a hours long search to find the hidden area where to drop the files. Third especially apple apps like iBooks do not allow a fully conform file exchange, try dropping or sending an pub file directly to iBooks. The idea was brain dead from the beginning especially since users haven't had any problem with folders for the last 20 years, and the replacement makes things worse.

Reply Score: 5

Comment by mtzmtulivu
by mtzmtulivu on Wed 22nd Sep 2010 19:00 UTC
mtzmtulivu
Member since:
2006-11-14


Contrary to popular belief around here, I actually really like Apple's products (read any review I've written and you'll see), and I tend to think that Apple has a slightly better grasp on how to make mundane tasks in computing easier to accomplish than most other software licensors. As an iPhone owner, I obviously know how much of a pain it is to get content on your iPhone, but with it being a phone, it never really bothered me all that much.


This is how Apple related conversations happen online, publishers write about apple in an apologetic/sympathetic or flat out ignore any shortcomings of any idevice and the mentioning of the shortcoming comes from the comments section. You are setting up the conversation backwards Thom and that is why you are appearing as "hating" on Apple and their products.

Not that many people complain Thom, there need to be some sort of a balance on how these conversations are set up. There need to be somebody balancing out the likes of "MG Siegler" on techcrunch. Just dont go overboard.

Reply Score: 3

This isn't new...
by nathbeadle on Wed 22nd Sep 2010 19:13 UTC
nathbeadle
Member since:
2006-08-08

I heard about this "feature" a while ago, either through a keynote speech or some tech review (probably Ars) but this is how it was going to be for any app that wants to have its own file storage capabilities.

As much as I'd love to drag and drop files under my computer, I can't really knock this method. BESIDES this example, EVERYTHING else for an iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad is done through iTunes. Want to sync music? iTunes.. want to synch your calendar and choose what groups of contacts to sync.. iTunes.

Sure, us tech minded people don't like this... but everyone else, they have been trained to think one place, so a few steps isn't as big a deal to them then to remember "Okay, what do I use iTunes for and when do I go to My Computer and create a folder"

Reply Score: 3

RE: This isn't new...
by Thom_Holwerda on Wed 22nd Sep 2010 19:20 UTC in reply to "This isn't new..."
Thom_Holwerda Member since:
2005-06-29

Sure, us tech minded people don't like this... but everyone else, they have been trained to think one place, so a few steps isn't as big a deal to them then to remember "Okay, what do I use iTunes for and when do I go to My Computer and create a folder"


Drag and drop files on iPhone icon in Explorer/Finder.

...or...

Load up iTunes, wait 60 seconds for it to load. Drop files in iTunes - but only the files the iPad actually supports. Wait for the files to be imported. Press sync, wait.

Then figure out which video/audio files iTunes did not accept. Then go to your device in iTunes. Go to the Apps tab. Go to File Sharing, select VLC from the list, click Add. Use an unintuitive file picker to browse to the files iTunes did not accept. Wait for the files to upload. Repeat last paragraph for different files other than media files (if needed).

How, again, is the second method supposed to be easier?

Reply Score: 5

RE[2]: This isn't new...
by Macrat on Wed 22nd Sep 2010 20:46 UTC in reply to "RE: This isn't new..."
Macrat Member since:
2006-03-27

Drag and drop files on iPhone icon in Explorer/Finder.

...or...

Load up iTunes, wait 60 seconds for it to load. Drop files in iTunes


Averages users don't drag and drop anything.

Most of their media comes from ripping CDs in iTunes or buying from the Apple iTunes store.

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: This isn't new...
by poundsmack on Wed 22nd Sep 2010 20:50 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: This isn't new..."
poundsmack Member since:
2005-07-13

"Averages users don't drag and drop anything. "

i wouldn't say that, i'd say its about a 50/50 split

Reply Score: 2

RE[4]: This isn't new...
by jtfolden on Wed 22nd Sep 2010 21:24 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: This isn't new..."
jtfolden Member since:
2005-08-12

No, IME, novice/mainstream users don't drag and drop much of anything. They are used to clicking and choosing things in dialogue boxes and windows but most don't try dragging - particularly on Windows.

You'd be amazed at the number of people that don't even realize you can drag a file into a mail window to attach it to an outgoing message.

Reply Score: 1

RE[5]: This isn't new...
by poundsmack on Wed 22nd Sep 2010 21:51 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: This isn't new..."
poundsmack Member since:
2005-07-13

"You'd be amazed at the number of people that don't even realize you can drag a file into a mail window to attach it to an outgoing message."

As a sysadmin who overseas over 500 "users" and 35+ thech types, I'm not that surprised. ;)

Reply Score: 3

RE[3]: This isn't new...
by Thom_Holwerda on Wed 22nd Sep 2010 20:58 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: This isn't new..."
Thom_Holwerda Member since:
2005-06-29

Averages users don't drag and drop anything.


Generalisation = fail. I see people drag and drop all the time - and I have zero geek friends (geeks freak me out).

Most of their media comes from ripping CDs in iTunes


Barely any one of my friends buys CDs. I'm the lone ranger when it comes to that in my social circle.

or buying from the Apple iTunes store.


Haha, good one. In the US maybe - here, not so much. I don't know ANYONE who buys stuff in the iTMS, mostly because downloading is a) legal and b) cheaper and c) torrentz.com actually has worthwhile stuff (no films or TV series in Europe's iTMS, for example).

Also, and maybe more importantly, iTMS requires a credit card. People in The Netherlands don't pay with credit cards - we have regular bank cards with checking accounts for that. Credit cards are nearly exclusively used while travelling.

Edited 2010-09-22 20:59 UTC

Reply Score: 3

RE[4]: This isn't new...
by ephracis on Wed 22nd Sep 2010 23:29 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: This isn't new..."
ephracis Member since:
2007-09-23

Yeah, I don't get the whole credit card thing in U.S. Why spend money you don't have when you can just earn money and spend what you have? It's more economically sound.

Besides, when travelling inside Europe you can actually use your bank card, which is great. I only used my MasterCard when I was in Kenya two years ago. Then I discarded it. I prefer to spend money that I have, without paying any fees or interests.

OT:
I don't get the whole thing with iTunes anyway. I have been looking around for a good piece of software to play my music for a while and iTunes was in the top five but it just tries to do too much. Winamp looks like an alien took a shit all over my screen, so I decided to actually write my own music app instead.

Btw, does iTunes still play music? ;)

Reply Score: 1

RE[4]: This isn't new...
by flynn on Thu 23rd Sep 2010 00:01 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: This isn't new..."
flynn Member since:
2009-03-19

Also, and maybe more importantly, iTMS requires a credit card. People in The Netherlands don't pay with credit cards - we have regular bank cards with checking accounts for that. Credit cards are nearly exclusively used while travelling.

What you are describing is what we in the US call a debit card. However, at least in the US, we can use debit cards exactly as if they were credit cards. I don't have a credit card, but I do use my debit card for every service that requires one, like Amazon purchases, Steam purchases, Netflix subscription...etc, and the money is subtracted directly from my checking account. I don't think these places are even aware that I'm paying with a debit card instead of a credit card.

I always assumed that debit cards or bank cards in other countries work the same way.

Reply Score: 2

RE[4]: This isn't new...
by Neolander on Thu 23rd Sep 2010 05:38 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: This isn't new..."
Neolander Member since:
2010-03-08

Also, and maybe more importantly, iTMS requires a credit card. People in The Netherlands don't pay with credit cards - we have regular bank cards with checking accounts for that. Credit cards are nearly exclusively used while travelling.

Wrong. At least here in france, you can buy "iTunes tickets" and use them to pay online on a €10 ticket = €10 online basis. It's one of the things done best (not right, doing it right would require a non-proprietary online banking solution) by Apple on their modern line of products, I must give credit where it's due.

(Also, aside from being a security hell and not being used worldwide, the credit card system prevents childrens from buying things, which is especially funny for something mainly targeted at them)

Reply Score: 3

RE[4]: This isn't new...
by bornagainenguin on Thu 23rd Sep 2010 13:45 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: This isn't new..."
bornagainenguin Member since:
2005-08-07

Thom_Holwerda posted...

I see people drag and drop all the time - and I have zero geek friends (geeks freak me out).


Brother are you in the wrong place and line of work. Don't look now but you're surrounded by geeks...geeks are EVERYWHERE on this site! ;)

--bornagainpenguin

PS: I'm a geek myself. ...boo! ;)

Reply Score: 2

RE[4]: This isn't new...
by Bounty on Thu 23rd Sep 2010 16:24 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: This isn't new..."
Bounty Member since:
2006-09-18

Also, and maybe more importantly, iTMS requires a credit card. People in The Netherlands don't pay with credit cards - we have regular bank cards with checking accounts for that. Credit cards are nearly exclusively used while travelling.


You guys can't use your regular bank cards as "credit cards?" I know i can use my bank card as both, takes the money out the same either way.

Reply Score: 2

RE[5]: This isn't new...
by apoclypse on Thu 23rd Sep 2010 18:42 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: This isn't new..."
apoclypse Member since:
2007-02-17

Same here.

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: This isn't new...
by segedunum on Thu 23rd Sep 2010 00:47 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: This isn't new..."
segedunum Member since:
2005-07-06

Averages users don't drag and drop anything.[/quote]
Wow. So no one opens a document or has anything sent to them via e-mail or is exposed to files in any way? What planet do you live on?

[quote]Most of their media comes from ripping CDs in iTunes or buying from the Apple iTunes store.

Most will have at one time or another shared tunes with other people or sent them copies and some will have actually downloaded them from elsewhere without iTunes ever having been involved. That might come as a shock, I know. That means dealing with files.

I missed the memo on how iTunes has become a file transfer application that says what you can and can't transfer.

Reply Score: 3

RE[3]: This isn't new...
by No it isnt on Thu 23rd Sep 2010 12:38 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: This isn't new..."
No it isnt Member since:
2005-11-14

It never ceases to amaze me what utter bullshit you fanboys will invent to support Apple's shenanigans.

You haven't got any data on "average users".

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: This isn't new...
by pandronic on Wed 22nd Sep 2010 20:55 UTC in reply to "RE: This isn't new..."
pandronic Member since:
2006-05-18

It's Steve's "special" way of doing things easier and he's not going to change it because it's perfect and you know ... you have to think different, understand a new paradigm and all that shit.

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: This isn't new...
by Moredhas on Wed 22nd Sep 2010 22:11 UTC in reply to "RE: This isn't new..."
Moredhas Member since:
2008-04-10

In my experience, as soon as you start talking about file types or formats to an "average" user, they just get angry and confused. There's still plenty of older phones floating around in Australia, and manufacturers used to sometimes use proprietary image formats, or only support a handful (like one phone might like jpegs while another prefers png). Explaining to my painfully stupid customers why they can open some pictures but not others without saying "buy a new phone you cheap bastard, stop using ten year old tech", is almost traumatic.

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: This isn't new...
by Thom_Holwerda on Wed 22nd Sep 2010 22:13 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: This isn't new..."
Thom_Holwerda Member since:
2005-06-29

In my experience, as soon as you start talking about file types or formats to an "average" user, they just get angry and confused.


and yet, that's exactly what iTunes forces them to think about, since i-devices and iTunes only handle like three formats, making it necessary to have additional applications like VLC with complicated upload procedures.

Now, imagine a simple icon appearing on the desktop. Drop shit on it - no matter the file type - and iOS takes care of where to put it. Third party apps can register which file types they can display, and get access to those file types only. App Store review ensures no shenanigans. No more fiddling about.

Reply Score: 2

iOS or Application
by Headrush on Wed 22nd Sep 2010 19:44 UTC
Headrush
Member since:
2006-01-03

I agree using iTunes for file transfer sucks, but some of the blame has to go with the app developer.

iOS 4 has introduced shared files that any application that registers that they can open that type file can access it. Additionally, although it's not drag and drop in the finder (aka jailbreaks can enable this, so should apple), transferring files over wifi is easily done and can be done by any app.

A good example is drop box on iDevices. Files put into the shared directory, select the file, and any app that has registered to handle that file type can be used.

Reply Score: 3

RE: iOS or Application
by werpu on Thu 23rd Sep 2010 11:38 UTC in reply to "iOS or Application"
werpu Member since:
2006-01-18

I agree using iTunes for file transfer sucks, but some of the blame has to go with the app developer.

iOS 4 has introduced shared files that any application that registers that they can open that type file can access it. Additionally, although it's not drag and drop in the finder (aka jailbreaks can enable this, so should apple), transferring files over wifi is easily done and can be done by any app.

A good example is drop box on iDevices. Files put into the shared directory, select the file, and any app that has registered to handle that file type can be used.


Actually wifi sharing for video files is a major pain because it takes way longer than a simple USB transfer. While it is viable for pdfs or mp3s it is definitely not for video files. Secondly even apple has not fully implemented the data API in their apps, have you ever tried an open with or a direct drop of epub files in iReader, guess what not possible because iReader does not register itself as being epub aware, they hacked themselves into the data exchange of iTunes instead, you cannot even drag and drop epubs from itunes into the device like you can do for mp3s you have to go over sync.

Third the usb restrictions go way beyound of what you think here. Even if some applications have opened gaps in the non usb storage mentality (goodreader for example) you still cannot simply connect to any computer having itunes, apple has imposed a 5 machines being able to register the device limit. And guess what you have to register first before being able to drop any files into the good reader or any other app data area in itunes.
The entire file exchange area in iOS is simply nothing Apple should be proud of, it definitely is iOSs weakest part it is even weaker than the missing copy paste in iOS 1.0 was.

Edited 2010-09-23 11:42 UTC

Reply Score: 3

It's The Content Owners Stupid
by mjhi11 on Wed 22nd Sep 2010 19:46 UTC
mjhi11
Member since:
2009-08-15

First, this is no slam of a person, author, or any other individual. It's a creative take on the sentiment "it's the economy stupid". In this case it's the "content owners" stupid.

Many of the complaints about Apple, Apple lock in, DRM, etc. is in my opinion wrongly blamed upon Apple where the real villains are the content creators who have demanded what most would consider unreasonable restrictions on their content.

Apple had to accept these restrictions, and spend millions developing a DRM strategy that would satisfy the content owners to get us to the point where we are today, digital content available for download.

It very well could have been Microsoft, Napster or hundreds of other companies who were selling (and in some cases continue to sell) DRM technologies to protect the content owners IP, but it was Apple, with the brilliance of their one-two punch...hardware and software that FINALLY convinced the content owners to take a chance on digital downloads.

Apple proved the concept, but it's the content owners who have played unfairly, allowing Apple competitors to offer "unprotected" content to Google and other Apple competitors while continuing to hamstring Apple with DRM and other content requirements that limit your choice. Remember Steve Job's open letter to the music industry about removing DRM from music?

Sure, Apple would prefer a "pure" Apple environment, Apple computers, Apple hardware, Apple iTunes, Apple TV, Apple networking technologies, etc. Name me a technology vendor that wouldn't. Sony...you bet. Microsoft absolutely.

In fact I'd argue that both Microsoft and Sony have been even more guilty of proprietary "lock in" than Apple ever has.

- Microsoft at least a decade or more Microsoft has tried to win the DRM wars with others with their proprietary Windows Media and DRM technologies. They failed, not because their technology was any less "oppressive" but because the failed to recognize the benefits of being a hardware, software and multimedia company like Apple was, depending upon hardware vendors to create hardware, depending upon content creators for content and they'd hoped by building in DRM to their OS and media software with 90% of the computer desktops, any content vendor that didn't buy into their vision were fools.

- Sony is another company that foolishly bet on "proprietary" DRM, technologies and royalties on their own technology at the expense of consumers. Atrac, CD, DVD, BlueRay. All proprietary technologies that in theory were to pad Sony's bottom line but all limiting consumer choice, flexibility and media portability.

For those who think that MP3 is some "open" panacea, note that it was somewhat of a fluke. Created originally by the Motion Picture Experts Group (MPEG) as a compression technology, it is a proprietary, patented technology intended for the motion picture industry to allow multi-channel audio for films and digital audio broadcasting. Any company that uses MP3 technology must pay royalties.

AAC is also based on proprietary technology and requires a license as well. But it's Apple's Fairplay (but it just as well could be Microsoft's DRM, Sony's DRM or any number of other company's DRM technologies) that takes the largest hit.

My point is, the content providers were not going to let their content out in the wide open, without some form of DRM, and those same people, after the success of digital content, are now cutting back room deals with Apple's competitors while Apple must still honor previous contracts and the DRM restrictions until they can re-negotiate with the content providers.

So too often I've seen people here make Apple the villain while ignoring the fact that if it weren't for Apple and proving the case for digital media, the freedom we have today, Google media downloads, other company downloads, developments such as Ogg Vorbis, millions of songs available for download, videos, TV programs, etc. would have never been an option.

Interestingly, I'm ready to turn on Apple myself for "giving up" their push for consumer "ownership" (even with DRM restrictions) with their latest Apple TV release which doesn't allow for local storage but depends upon streaming content. I see it as a huge step backwards and too huge a concession to the content providers as we don't OWN the content (even with restrictions) but only rent it for a short time at the whim of the content providers.

To tie back to Thom's article, I believe that because of the restrictions content providers have placed upon Apple, they have to make certain tasks more difficult (such as dragging and dropping "media" files on their hardware). iTunes (for better or worse, and I'd even agree worse) is that DRM gatekeeper that makes sure that non-protected content doesn't make it onto iPads, iPods, iPhones, etc.

Now of course like most folks here I know how to "get around" these restrictions but at least publicly Apple can maintain they are upholding their DRM requirements for the content providers, while smart folks who care can still work around them, and the general public, who doesn't seem to care (based on Apple's popularity) still gets the "it just works" benefits.

Edited 2010-09-22 19:56 UTC

Reply Score: 4

Thom_Holwerda Member since:
2005-06-29

In this case it's the "content owners" stupid.


That excuse was believable back when this iTunes business all started. Today, the situation is different. Apple calls the shots now. The ONLY reason this issue hasn't been addressed yet is because Apple wants you to do. Everything. Through. iTunes. No matter how much of a Frankenapp it has become.

Big Content does not dictate how Apple's devices interact with the outside world. Apple does.

Edited 2010-09-22 19:52 UTC

Reply Score: 4

vivainio Member since:
2008-12-26

The ONLY reason this issue hasn't been addressed yet is because Apple wants you to do. Everything. Through. iTunes. No matter how much of a Frankenapp it has become.


Bleh. You geeks just don't get it.

People want simplicity. And elegance. And a bunch of other things I can't remember right now.

Reply Score: 2

Thom_Holwerda Member since:
2005-06-29

People want simplicity. And elegance. And a bunch of other things I can't remember right now.


Except iTunes isn't simple. Or elegant. Or anything other than a slow, bloated, unstable piece of crap.

Reply Score: 2

poundsmack Member since:
2005-07-13

Thom, I've never agreed with you more. That may very well be the smartest thing anyone has ever said about anything...

iTunes blows. I can't even give it points for making an effort. given, people ("users") accept it, but it's because they are users. show them something better, instal it, and set it as they're default and they will use that instead if it does all the functions they need (and sometimes if they don't). That's the same reason everyone I work with has Opera on their machines and IE is no longer the default ;)

Reply Score: 4

WorknMan Member since:
2005-11-13


Except iTunes isn't simple. Or elegant. Or anything other than a slow, bloated, unstable piece of crap.


+100 for this comment. It's apparent that some people like iTunes (God only knows why), and some people don't, so here's how you settle this matter...

On my Sansa Clip+, there's an option where you can switch between having the device hold your hand and sync files with a media player, and simply having the device show up as a mass storage device. This way, everybody's happy.

So, why not just give people the option? The reason is because Apple is not about giving people options. There approach is a 'one size fits all' approach, but one size never does fit all.

BTW: On Android devices, you can install an app (forget the name) that lets you beam files wirelessly from your computer.

Reply Score: 5

vivainio Member since:
2008-12-26

BTW: On Android devices, you can install an app (forget the name) that lets you beam files wirelessly from your computer.


And on nokia devices, you get basic usb mass storage. Or, on Maemo, you can sftp to the phone and copy the files over with krusader/filezilla/whatever.

(BTW, my earlier comment was misguided parody of Apple user hivemind).

Reply Score: 2

jabbotts Member since:
2007-09-06

but rsync over ssh versus sftp (ftp over ssh). I can rsync my content changes to the device from my primary machine. I can rsync my changes from the primary machine to the device from any internet connection.

And, no vendor/sku/softwareversion specific jailbreaking; just install openssh-server and rootssh from the Maemo repository; for any maemo based device. It makes Android look like a freaking Iphone by comparison.

Reply Score: 2

polaris20 Member since:
2005-07-06

"People want simplicity. And elegance. And a bunch of other things I can't remember right now.


Except iTunes isn't simple. Or elegant. Or anything other than a slow, bloated, unstable piece of crap.
"

What's complicated about it? On a network of hundreds of users, I don't have ANY complaints about it on the Windows or Mac side, in terms of usability or stability. If our users can figure it out, anyone can.

Reply Score: 2

Bill Shooter of Bul Member since:
2006-07-14

Yes, with these definitions of those


Simple: anything they already know how to do.
Elegant: anything that makes them look cool while they do it.

Edited 2010-09-22 23:00 UTC

Reply Score: 3

Macrat Member since:
2006-03-27

" In this case it's the "content owners" stupid.


That excuse was believable back when this iTunes business all started. Today, the situation is different. Apple calls the shots now.
"

That's why today you'll find DRM free songs sold on iTunes because of Apple "calling the shots" on the content owners.

Reply Score: 2

apoclypse Member since:
2007-02-17

Dude. You jumped the shark like five Apple articles ago. Apples stuff doesn't work like you want it. Get fucking over it. In this case the text issue isn' even Apple's fault but somehow you found a way to blame it on them anyway. So you have to use itunes to sync your media, I have to use a BES server to sync my Blackberry with Outlook, big fucking whoop.

Reply Score: 3

Shkaba Member since:
2006-06-22

In this case the text issue isn' even Apple's fault but somehow you found a way to blame it on them anyway.

One would expect, if you are going to provide different orientations for a device you would take into account proper scaling. It is not a rocket science


So you have to use itunes to sync your media, I have to use a BES server to sync my Blackberry with Outlook, big fucking whoop.


You are waaay into the left field with this one! Lets see ... BES is only one way of synchronizing emails, for outlook you can also use blackberry desktop manager. But what is even more important is that blackberry, also exposes its mass storage where you can drag and drop files, which is what Thom is talking about

Reply Score: 2

Shane Member since:
2005-07-06

One would expect, if you are going to provide different orientations for a device you would take into account proper scaling. It is not a rocket science


iOS provides lots of different options for scaling and positioning. This is a simple mistake by the developer. VLC will no doubt fix it soon.

Edited 2010-09-23 04:10 UTC

Reply Score: 2

apoclypse Member since:
2007-02-17

Yeah but the importan bits that I want to get to, the email is not accessible this way. I have to use RIM's crappy sync tools or the much better BES In-order for this to work properly. My point is that everything has it's limitations. My real point in my comment is that Thom seems to basically do these articles to get page hits because otherwise they are pretty damn stupid when you read them.With little actual substance and lots of opinion. If I want to see that shit I'd go to slashdot. Basically these "articles" are exactly what people accuse Apple of being, all hype an no substance. If he has such issues with Apple how about be stop bitchig and buy something else and spare us. The only thing I can think of is that Apple must of bitch slapped Thom at some point to inspire such ire.

As for the iOS comment. I personally hate ITunes. It's slow, bloated and designed horribly. That we all agree on. But it does manage content fairly well and when you have a 400gb library like I do dragging and dropping doesn't cut it.

The text issues is an issue fromthe developer of the VLC app. Even the article says as much. There Are many apps on the app store and this doesn't seem to e a rampant issue byte iPhone documentation is very specific on how to handle text placement to avoid just these issues.

Edited 2010-09-23 05:41 UTC

Reply Score: 2

Shkaba Member since:
2006-06-22

Yeah but the importan bits that I want to get to, the email is not accessible this way. I have to use RIM's crappy sync tools or the much better BES In-order for this to work properly. My point is that everything has it's limitations. .... Basically these "articles" are exactly what people accuse Apple of being, all hype an no substance. If he has such issues with Apple how about be stop bitchig and buy something else and spare us. The only thing I can think of is that Apple must of bitch slapped Thom at some point to inspire such ire.
...
As for the iOS comment. I personally hate ITunes. It's slow, bloated and designed horribly. That we all agree on. But it does manage content fairly well and when you have a 400gb library like I do dragging and dropping doesn't cut it.


I am going to make a couple of assumptions here.

1) You were using Outlook 2010 and older versions of blackberry desktop manager(up to and not including 6.0) couldn't sync emails. Even with upgrade to get it to 6.0 problem remained. I had to clean up some RIM folders to get 6.0 to synchronize with outlook 2010

2) You have never used blackberry as mass storage to transfer media files

As far as number 1 goes, I was royally pissed off with RIM especially considering that outlook 2010 beta was around for quite a while, and they didn't communicate well with the users as to when exactly this would be fixed. Having said that RIM's sync software is primarily what it says it is. A software used to synchronize a device with some applications. It is not a media player, shopping gateway, content sniffing, installer for a whole bunch of unwanted software, that doesn't work well in other operating systems.

As for Thom's motives to post Apple related articles, I will not speculate, but you might be right. He might be a masochist as well, exposing himself to the "pains" of Apple products. Who knows? I subscribe to a very simple principle: Vote with you wallet!! I do not/will not buy anything from Apple. Not because of any one product in particular, but because in my view Apple is an unethical company. As for managing/consuming content, I am somewhat satisfied with Win7/PS3 setup

What a lot of Apple fanboys are missing is that with the growing popularity of Apple products, they (Apple) will come under a bigger scrutiny then they were when they were catering to a smaller niche. This inevitably leads to a lot of people complaining, demanding etc. Couple that with few recent flops (iPhone4) and you have a wave of negative publicity of some sort. And for some reason this bugs fanboys in a way I do not understand, nor will I try (not a psychiatrist

Reply Score: 2

apoclypse Member since:
2007-02-17

"Yeah but the importan bits that I want to get to, the email is not accessible this way. I have to use RIM's crappy sync tools or the much better BES In-order for this to work properly. My point is that everything has it's limitations. .... Basically these "articles" are exactly what people accuse Apple of being, all hype an no substance. If he has such issues with Apple how about be stop bitchig and buy something else and spare us. The only thing I can think of is that Apple must of bitch slapped Thom at some point to inspire such ire.
...
As for the iOS comment. I personally hate ITunes. It's slow, bloated and designed horribly. That we all agree on. But it does manage content fairly well and when you have a 400gb library like I do dragging and dropping doesn't cut it.


I am going to make a couple of assumptions here.

1) You were using Outlook 2010 and older versions of blackberry desktop manager(up to and not including 6.0) couldn't sync emails. Even with upgrade to get it to 6.0 problem remained. I had to clean up some RIM folders to get 6.0 to synchronize with outlook 2010

2) You have never used blackberry as mass storage to transfer media files

"

Your assumptions are wrong. First I work in IT, I have to support and deal with Blackberrys on a daily basis and have been supporting the device since its second iteration. My current work device is a Blackberry Storm, which hardly gets used because it sucks donkeys balls. I know exactly what I'm talking about when I speak about the blackberry.

Second you missed my point entirely, you still have to use Blackberry's software to get it to sync emails, am I right? You still need Desktop Manager, right? How is that different than iTunes? Its still a piece of software forced upon users to be able to sync their information with out much alternatives, which was the point I was making. Be it BES, or Desktop manager you are not syncing emails without either. Take the fact that we are talking about Outlook out of the equation. What is the fundamental difference in practice between the two? Now take RIm out of the equation and drop in any other company with inane sync tools forced upon their users.

Reply Score: 2

Shkaba Member since:
2006-06-22

My current work device is a Blackberry Storm, which hardly gets used because it sucks donkeys balls. I know exactly what I'm talking about when I speak about the blackberry.


Agree completely about Storm. Questionable second sentence, see further down


Second you missed my point entirely, you still have to use Blackberry's software to get it to sync emails, am I right? You still need Desktop Manager, right? How is that different than iTunes? Its still a piece of software forced upon users to be able to sync their information with out much alternatives, which was the point I was making. Be it BES, or Desktop manager you are not syncing emails without either.


It would seem to me that you are missing the point of Thom's rant, which if I understood correctly (please Thom correct me if I am wrong) is more like :
When syncing a device with media files if the process is not just A click then at least provide a way to just transfer a file, like a file: as in use the device in a mass storage device mode. RIM provides you with 2 ways to sync your emails, (totally not related to the article but nerveless illustrates differences) and also provides 3 ways to manipulate your files and does none of these pretends to be : media player, shopping gateway, content sniffing, installer for additional software etc .

If you still can't see the difference then:

Questionable second sentence

becomes:
I seriously doubt it

Reply Score: 2

mjhi11 Member since:
2009-08-15

Apple calls the shots? Really?

- Apple abandons local storage (and consumer ownership of content) for the latest Apple TV and instead moves to a rental/streaming model.

- Apple loses battle with content providers for 99 cent music downloads, most popular titles now $1.29.

- Wall Street Journal says that Apple is having problems finalizing content deals before the launch of the iPad. Publishers are worried about iPad apps killing traditional revenue models.

- NBC CEO unlikely to participate in 99 cent TV show rentals, says it would devalue our content.

- Apple TV faces serious challenge from Google TV

And this is only a handful of headlines pulled in a minute or so.

Reply Score: 3

tyrione Member since:
2005-11-21

Apple calls the shots? Really?

- Apple abandons local storage (and consumer ownership of content) for the latest Apple TV and instead moves to a rental/streaming model.

- Apple loses battle with content providers for 99 cent music downloads, most popular titles now $1.29.

- Wall Street Journal says that Apple is having problems finalizing content deals before the launch of the iPad. Publishers are worried about iPad apps killing traditional revenue models.

- NBC CEO unlikely to participate in 99 cent TV show rentals, says it would devalue our content.

- Apple TV faces serious challenge from Google TV

And this is only a handful of headlines pulled in a minute or so.



Come back in 6 months and see how these current or recently current notes have changed.

Reply Score: 2

poundsmack Member since:
2005-07-13

"Many of the complaints about Apple, Apple lock in, DRM, etc. is in my opinion wrongly blamed upon Apple where the real villains are the content creators who have demanded what most would consider unreasonable restrictions on their content. "

Apple works with the content providers and Apple tells them what plans they have. then Apple "encourages" them to go on baord with it, hence why apple has all these things already set up for product launches. apple tells them their plans, the companies that work with apple want to be along for the ride ($$$), and that's how you end up where were at.

content providers want ot make money so they follow Steve's "vision" and Apple's controlling nature (which is a good thing for a company what wants to make $$$ first and foremost).

it is what it is....

Reply Score: 3

Yawn
by galvanash on Wed 22nd Sep 2010 19:49 UTC
galvanash
Member since:
2006-01-25

Wake me up when VLC/iPad supports network/HTTP streaming, then I might be interested. I can live with it being Wifi only, but 3G would be nice too.

Until then, I couldn't care less with how complicated it is to sync files. It is a wireless device, it should work like one. Syncing files should be a last resort option, i.e. copy a few things over for those times when I can't get network access. The rest of the time I should be able to simply stream things.

I know Apple has made developers jump through quite a few hoops to get streaming apps approved in the past, so I'm not blaming VLC. I just find it ironic that a client called "Video Lan Client" doesn't actually work with a Lan ;) Until it does its useless to me.

Reply Score: 6

RE: Yawn
by Kasi on Wed 22nd Sep 2010 20:21 UTC in reply to "Yawn"
Kasi Member since:
2008-07-12

That app is called Zimocast.

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: Yawn
by galvanash on Wed 22nd Sep 2010 22:45 UTC in reply to "RE: Yawn"
galvanash Member since:
2006-01-25

I already have Air Video, which is essentially the same thing, but both of these apps have to transcode the video prior to streaming ;)

VLC with streaming support, assuming it works anywhere near as good as the desktop version, would rock. And it would be free to boot. Actually, if I were them I would charge a few bucks for it to support the project - I mean this is the app store, people expect to pay for shit that works...

Reply Score: 2

iTunes
by Shkaba on Wed 22nd Sep 2010 23:54 UTC
Shkaba
Member since:
2006-06-22

is a POS (and I am not talking point of sale) that makes even windows media player look good, and is used primarily as an initiator to : "Well it works just fine on Mac it is windows fault that user switching is ...*blah*...maybe you should try a Mac". Which just irritates the heck out of me, especially in light of "all user data is lost on OS X when switching to multi user environment" bug thingy ...

Reply Score: 4

v RE: iTunes
by kaiwai on Thu 23rd Sep 2010 02:59 UTC in reply to "iTunes"
RE[2]: iTunes
by Shkaba on Thu 23rd Sep 2010 03:04 UTC in reply to "RE: iTunes"
Shkaba Member since:
2006-06-22

Stop being a lying scumbag; the 'data bug' is related to a guest account: http://www.osnews.com/story/22328/Guest_Account_Bug_in_Snow_Leopard... How many people use a guest account on their Mac? the number could probably fit into a telephone booth with enough space left for a pole dancer to strut her thing.


If I am a "lying scumbag" (needles to say I deeply disagree with that label), how come you didn't refute me. After all it is beyond the point as to how many people use the guest account. The point is that a serious OS should deal with this in a proper manner. The way OS X did reeks of half baked OS!!

Reply Score: 3

RE[3]: iTunes
by kaiwai on Thu 23rd Sep 2010 03:28 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: iTunes"
kaiwai Member since:
2005-07-06

If I am a "lying scumbag" (needles to say I deeply disagree with that label), how come you didn't refute me. After all it is beyond the point as to how many people use the guest account. The point is that a serious OS should deal with this in a proper manner. The way OS X did reeks of half baked OS!!


No, this is what you said:

"all user data is lost on OS X when switching to multi user environment" bug thingy


Which has never existed, the bug was relating to the guest account and NOTHING to do with 'switching to multi user environment'. Research your posts or GTFO.

Edited 2010-09-23 03:31 UTC

Reply Score: 2

v The view from down a dell
by RagaR on Thu 23rd Sep 2010 06:56 UTC
Good Reader
by testman on Thu 23rd Sep 2010 07:56 UTC
testman
Member since:
2007-10-15

Good Reader allows you to copy files to your iPad via wi-fi -- you simply connect to it like any network device. It may not be the "Apple-way" of doing things, but it works and it works well.

Would be nice to see VLC incorporate something like this.

Reply Score: 2

Why blame Apple for this one?
by clasqm on Thu 23rd Sep 2010 08:16 UTC
clasqm
Member since:
2010-09-23

Lord knows there is plenty to dislike about iTunes. And Apple, for that matter. But the VLC devs chose to use iTunes to get content into their app. Nobody held a gun to their heads and made them do it. Go complain to them. Or complain about them if that floats your boat.

They could have chosen otherwise. Take Stanza. It ignores iTunes completely and gets its files directly, over a wifi connection, from either the desktop version of Stanza or from Calibre. There are other apps that use Dropbox or Box.net as their conduit for content. Everything from Simplenote to Kindle uses "cloud" storage. So there are a number of ways to get your data onto an iOS device. iTunes, with all its flaws, is just one of them.

So Thom's complaint boils down to the fact that the one way of adding content that he would like to see (USB Mass Storage, drag 'n drop) is not available. Fair enough, but how is this a "major weakness"? Minor irritation, maybe.

Reply Score: 2

RE: Why blame Apple for this one?
by _txf_ on Thu 23rd Sep 2010 10:33 UTC in reply to "Why blame Apple for this one?"
_txf_ Member since:
2008-03-17

Right...lets waste (battery) time while we transfer Gbs of data over wifi. Does the Ipad even transfer over wifi at full n speeds?

Reply Score: 2

Give Them Time
by robco74 on Thu 23rd Sep 2010 09:54 UTC
robco74
Member since:
2009-10-22

Apple is still working on iOS for iPad. It's still running an older version. They did release an update to iWork that will allow it to pull files from iDisk (or any WebDAV server). There's still no printing, multitasking, etc. I'm sure file management is on the list somewhere, but it's not going to happen overnight.

Perhaps things will be all better when someone actually releases an Android tablet (or HP releases a webOS one) that isn't tied to a carrier contract. For now, try using Handbrake to convert to a format that works and plays well with iOS.

This is a relatively new platform, there are going to be some "major problems" for some time. There was quite a bit of functionality missing from earlier versions of OS X. It's been around for ten years now and it pretty mature. It will take time for iOS to reach that same level. I know folks with Android phones and they like them, but it ain't all sunshine, rainbows and lollipops there either. Every platform is going to have its share of weaknesses. It comes down to which ones you can live with or work around more easily.

Reply Score: 1

RE: Give Them Time
by werpu on Thu 23rd Sep 2010 10:03 UTC in reply to "Give Them Time"
werpu Member since:
2006-01-18

Apple is still working on iOS for iPad. It's still running an older version. They did release an update to iWork that will allow it to pull files from iDisk (or any WebDAV server). There's still no printing, multitasking, etc. I'm sure file management is on the list somewhere, but it's not going to happen overnight.

Perhaps things will be all better when someone actually releases an Android tablet (or HP releases a webOS one) that isn't tied to a carrier contract. For now, try using Handbrake to convert to a format that works and plays well with iOS.

This is a relatively new platform, there are going to be some "major problems" for some time. There was quite a bit of functionality missing from earlier versions of OS X. It's been around for ten years now and it pretty mature. It will take time for iOS to reach that same level. I know folks with Android phones and they like them, but it ain't all sunshine, rainbows and lollipops there either. Every platform is going to have its share of weaknesses. It comes down to which ones you can live with or work around more easily.



Actually the biggest issue simply is that apple disallows an explicit usb file storage mount. The solution would be so easy and android does it to some degree, simply hook in the device as usb disk let the users drop the content in a dedicated space and let the apps deal with the dropped content themselves, either they understand it or not. Android does it and it is very elegant, the only mistake Android does is to expose literally everything even the data which is set up by the applications themselves, which results in pointless folder clutter, the idea still is the best. Apples approach simply is lousy, do not expose anything, just put in an itunes backdoor which the apps themselves have to open, and then deliver your own apps with only half working implementations which prevent other apps to send the files over.
Dont get me wrong but apple definitely is on the wrong road their and you cannot excuse this by the age of iOS which in itself is an osx derivate. It is just that they started with this braindead idea from their ipod time, where they did not allow this road because someone could get the mp3s back from the device he has dropped in.

The result, semi strange solutions like goodreader which do not allow real usb mounts, but only webdav mounts and a slower than needed filetransfer or at least some kind of usb mount via itunes on maximum 5 selected machines the user is allowed to register the pad onto.

Reply Score: 3

Comment by _xmv
by _xmv on Thu 23rd Sep 2010 10:00 UTC
_xmv
Member since:
2008-12-09

i like to plug my android and its whatever i want it to be
- storage device
- emulated storage
- whatever proprietary itunes like software connection
- debug bridge connection

copying mp3s or videos can't get easier (:

Reply Score: 2

siraf72
Member since:
2006-02-22

This has been one way of getting content on and off the iphone/ipad for quite some time now.

Air Sharing, Ambiance, Google Earth, Gravilux, Omnifocus (and presumably others) - all provide the exact same facility for adding or removing content.

Is it as simple as dragging something to USB Mass Storage? No. But it's really not that bad.

I don't use iTunes to manage my movie collection so I use this method to copy movies into the Air Sharing app and view them through that. VLC just uses the exact same method.

Reply Score: 1

It's not really that simple.
by tuzor on Thu 23rd Sep 2010 10:17 UTC
tuzor
Member since:
2007-08-07

You gotta love Thom.
Claiming he likes Apple products yet any chance he gets he bashes them in the head and it really becomes evident in his comments how much he hates them as a company. Or maybe he's just trying to get more hits for osnews since all you need nowadays is One negative comment in your blog about Apple to get people to notice.

Anyways, I personally think that iTunes has become overloaded and they should separate the player from the syncing software for iPhone/iPad.
However, it runs perfectly on my mac and that goes for most mac users, if you use windows, tough luck.

As for VLC, it's un unnecessary hassle, just download handbrake, it will convert any file (handy for those 720/1080 mkvs) to a suitable iPhone/iPad ready for you to drop onto your device. The encoding takes some time but it's pretty awesome.

By the way I do agree the rest of the world that you need a native Hard Drive mounting feature for iDevices but only as a storage device.

The app/music/videos has to be done through a syncing program since 99.9% of the world (shocking huh Thom?) downloads apps/music/videos from the iTunes store and they need to be integrated. You can't have half of them working via drag and drop and the other through iTunes.

Edited 2010-09-23 10:22 UTC

Reply Score: 1

RE: It's not really that simple.
by _txf_ on Thu 23rd Sep 2010 10:51 UTC in reply to "It's not really that simple."
_txf_ Member since:
2008-03-17

You gotta love Thom.
Claiming he likes Apple products yet any chance he gets he bashes them in the head and it really becomes evident in his comments how much he hates them as a company. Or maybe he's just trying to get more hits for osnews since all you need nowadays is One negative comment in your blog about Apple to get people to notice.


Did you even read what he wrote? He said generally apple and their devices are generally more attuned to their users than most other manufacturers and devices.

You're a fool if you think that a critique on an ASPECT of a device is the same thing as bashing apple etc.



Anyways, I personally think that iTunes has become overloaded and they should separate the player from the syncing software for iPhone/iPad.
However, it runs perfectly on my mac and that goes for most mac users, if you use windows, tough luck.


Just because you're happy doesn't mean it is good. You probably just have low expectations or are just giving it a break because it is apple. I wasn't happy with iTunes on windows and I'm not happy with it on my mac.


As for VLC, it's un unnecessary hassle, just download handbrake, it will convert any file (handy for those 720/1080 mkvs) to a suitable iPhone/iPad ready for you to drop onto your device. The encoding takes some time but it's pretty awesome.


The fact that it takes time justifies the entire existence of VLC. Not only do you have to keep the same file in multiple formats, you also have plan you day around encoding files, or just don't bother.

Despite the fact that I like having media on the go, I've never bothered with movies for these ver reasons.


By the way I do agree the rest of the world that you need a native Hard Drive mounting feature for iDevices but only as a storage device.


Qué?


The app/music/videos has to be done through a syncing program since 99.9% of the world (shocking huh Thom?) downloads apps/music/videos from the iTunes store and they need to be integrated. You can't have half of them working via drag and drop and the other through iTunes.


Yeah I guess I'm in that 0.1% of the world where itunes does not offer videos. Even I weren't an illustrative case I can safely state that 99.9% is complete and utter BS.

Reply Score: 3

just follow the steps, "not a big deal"
by jabbotts on Thu 23rd Sep 2010 11:34 UTC
jabbotts
Member since:
2007-09-06

(I couldn't resisit.. but seriously..)

My first question would be; Can VLC provide an easier method for loading media while remaining within Apple's app-store policy? What other options does VLC have for content loading besides the four'ish step method they currently use?

If there was an easier way possible then VLC should consider that. If Apple's rules induce the complicated method for third party media software then we need to consider that.

Reply Score: 2

Just say no!
by Bounty on Thu 23rd Sep 2010 16:40 UTC
Bounty
Member since:
2006-09-18

iTunes is kind of a mixed blessing. It gives geeky people tons of potential revenue stream if you want to fix that crap. I fix other crap. Reasonable crap.

The best way to fix any iTunes related problem, is to use something else. I could fix iTunes problems, I could even make money doing it. Screw that. Just say no to iTunes. Got some friends trying to peer pressure you into using? Just say no!

This is your brain: 62:72:61:69:6e
This is your brain on iTunes: SV‹5pëB E¤WPÿuÿ

Reply Score: 2

I hate being an apologist for apple
by emerson999 on Thu 23rd Sep 2010 21:32 UTC
emerson999
Member since:
2007-12-08

But this is apple, what do you expect? They try to tie you in to apple hardware and apple software when they can. I can give people a pass with early iphone buys, but at this point in history you should know what you're getting into with them. There's some good, and some bad.

Reply Score: 2

Well if you think THATS bad......
by daniel_iversen on Fri 24th Sep 2010 11:32 UTC
daniel_iversen
Member since:
2005-07-16

...how about trying to friggin; move a single file from one mobile iDevice (ie. iPhone) to another mobile iDevice (ie. iPad)?

....Moving a photo from the phone to the iPad.... moving some files you've created on the iPad to the iPhone for mailing, etc.....

Well its IMPOSSIBLE?

Yes, both devices have bluetooth but is there any way to transfer files? NO.

Whats the matter with THAT?

Reply Score: 2

lol
by rafaelnp on Fri 24th Sep 2010 13:10 UTC
rafaelnp
Member since:
2009-06-03

Ipad sux, Apple sux. I can buy a better hardware and software from other companies, and the better: cheaper.
Do not waste your time and money buying a beautiful crap. ;)

Reply Score: 1

Comment by polaris20
by polaris20 on Fri 24th Sep 2010 14:29 UTC
polaris20
Member since:
2005-07-06

So VLC didn't set up their app to work around iOS's method of not using a mountable disk, and that's a glaring problem?

Interesting. That's not a problem for Air Sharing HD, which can be mounted as a webDAV drive, or Multitrack DAW and Quick Office Connect, of which files can easily be transferred on a web interface without plugging anything in.

I transferred a 4GB Citrix .iso from my Linux machine to my iPod touch, because I didn't feel like wasting a DVD and I had to bring it to work. Wow, that was tough. Took all of a few minutes.

VLC should have used this method, which would be far less tedious than even connecting a cable and mounting it as a drive.

Reply Score: 2